FMSF NEWSLETTER ARCHIVE - March/April 2004 - Vol. 13, No. 2, HTML version

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F M S   F O U N D A T I O N   N E W S L E T T E R     (e-mail edition)
March/April 2004, Vol. 13 No. 2
ISSN #1069-0484. Copyright (c) 2004 by the FMS Foundation
        The FMSF Newsletter is published 6 times a year by the
        False Memory Syndrome Foundation. The newsletter is
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      Bartha                         The next issue will be
         Legal Corner                   March/April 2004
           From Our Readers
             Bulletin Board

Dear Friends,

A $7.5 million settlement for Elizabeth Gale in February set a record
for individual psychiatric repressed-memory malpractice suits.[1] Ms.
Gale, a young woman with no history of psychiatric problems, had
sought help for depression. In an all-too-familiar story of hypnosis
and memory recovery therapy, she came to believe that she had multiple
personalities and was a breeder for a satanic ritual abuse cult. She
even had a tubal ligation, approved by her doctor, Bennett Braun,
M.D., so that she could no longer be used by the cult. Between 1988
and 1994, Ms. Gale was hospitalized 18 times, for a total of 5 1/2
years. If the names of defendants Bennett Braun, M.D., Roberta Sachs,
M.D., Corydon Hammond, Ph.D., and Chicago's Rush-Presbyterian-St.
Luke's Medical Center seem familiar, it is because you have read
about them many times. Braun, Sachs and the Medical Center were
also defendants in the $10.6 million settlement to Patricia Burgus
and her family in 1997.

Dr. Braun, currently practicing in Helena, Montana, following
restoration of his suspended license, was one of the founders of the
International Society for the Study of Multiple Personality and
Dissociation.[2] Ms. Gale had the misfortune of being referred to Dr.
Braun at the height of the multiple personality and satanic ritual
abuse madness supported by that organization.

One would think that the huge retractor settlements and awards in
recent years would prove a deterrent to others bent on finding ritual
abuse in patients. Unfortunately, that is not the case. The California
Psychological Association (CPA) will present a workshop on
"Psychotherapy with Ritual Abuse Survivors" at its San Diego
conference on March 25-28.[3] Speakers Ellen Lacter, Ph.D., and Mary
Battles, MFCC, have long advocated the unscientific ritual abuse
beliefs that have brought such misery to so many patients and
families. It is amazing that the CPA displays such disregard for
patient safety. However, as attorney Chris Barden has noted: "The
associations and licensing boards have proven virtually worthless in
policing their own ranks..." [4] Dr. Barden thinks that both
encouraging professionals to base their practice in science and
bringing highly visible litigation are needed for change.

In the past, some therapists have argued that understanding science
will not make them better therapists. We thought of that argument when
we read the following recent comment by Fred Crews:

"The reason why psychotherapists ought to familiarize themselves with
actual knowledge about the workings of memory, and why their
professional societies should stop waffling and promulgating
misinformation about it, is not that good science guarantees good
therapy; it is simply that pseudoscience inevitably leads to harm."[5]

Psuedoscientific beliefs about recovered memories and satanic abuse
have harmed thousands of people in the past decade, both patients such
as Elizabeth Gale, who came to hold false beliefs, and the people who
were accused on the basis of false beliefs. One of those accused
people was Saskatchewan's Richard Klassen, who brought a lawsuit
against those who prosecuted him. He claimed that the prosecutors were
malicious because, among other things, they should have recognized the
absurdity of most of the claims. In January, Justice George Baynton
held that Klassen had proven the case for malicious prosecution,

"The lives of the plaintiffs have been irrevocably damaged. The
unlawful actions of the defendants caused them to be held up to hatred
and public ridicule by being branded as pedophiles and wrongfully
charged with the most horrible and distasteful crimes in our society
... In my respectful view, the lack of any regret or remorse for what
was done to the plaintiffs is a strong indicator of malice on the part
of each of the defendants."[6]

A common thread among those who say that they were falsely accused of
abuse, such as Kelly Michaels and George Franklin, has been the effort
to clear their names. Parents who were not prosecuted feel the same.
One father wrote to us saying that he wanted to "stand on the rooftop
and shout to the world, `I am innocent.'" Sadly, few people
falsely accused have received or are likely ever to receive an
apology. In this Newsletter issue, you will read that Jesse Friedman
has filed a lawsuit against prosecutors. Jesse said: "I've been
waiting 16 years now to prove my innocence." Jesse's suit uses new
evidence found in the making of the documentary Capturing the
Friedmans, which has been nominated for an Academy Award.

Claims of satanic ritual abuse and new false accusations based only on
recovered memories do seem to have dropped sharply since the explosion
of the early 1990s. Although there remain cases from that period in
which people such as Bruce Perkins or Cecil Miller languish in prison
(see "Project Jericho," p. 4), the feeling is that the situation has
improved. FMSF groups in Ohio and Indiana have stopped publishing
newsletters. An FMSF group in Cincinnati no longer feels the need to
meet. And volunteers in Georgia wrote to us that "we have had no new
FMS contacts this past year. We hope that there will be no new cases,
but we are afraid that it could start again when memories of the
lawsuits and large settlements fade."

The fact that the California Psychological Association has a session
about ritual abuse on its program is evidence of how easily the return
to reason could be derailed. The comment by Dr. Steven Hyman (found in
the large box below) about the reluctance of professionals to employ
evidence-based therapies is an indication that the foundation for
continued improvement is not solid. Reviewing Remembering Trauma [7]
and Memory, Trauma Treatment, and the Law [8] in the March 11 issue of
the New York Review of Books, Fred Crews warns:

It would be a serious mistake... to assume that reckless traumatology
has now been permanently laid to rest. The conviction that fathers are
naturally prone to incestuous rape is still current. In some academic
departments, a dogged literalism about the repression/dissociation of
trauma has become oddly wedded to postmodernist suspicion of science.
Furthermore, most of the "trauma centers" that sprang up in the 1990s
to study and treat psychogenic amnesia are still operating under the
same premises as before. As for the theoreticians of recovered memory,
they continue to use their positions of authority in universities,
hospitals, and professional organizations to advance the views whose
hollowness McNally has exposed, and they can still count on a
surprising level of support from their colleagues.[9]

It seems, then, that there is movement on the continuum from some
unscientific beliefs about memory in the early 1990s to an ideal in
which people can expect safe and effective psychotherapy, but the
progress is fragile. A huge malpractice settlement in the Gale case is
countered by a professional organization's support for ritual
abuse. Acknowledgment of malicious prosecution in the Klassen case is
countered by professional reluctance to practice evidence-based
therapy and by the institutionalization of unscientific beliefs. The
climate has improved, but it can get better.

[1] Rooney, J.F. (2004, February 11). Docs, hospitals to pay $7.5
    million in claim of bad mental care. Chicago Daily Law Bulletin,
    p. 1.
[2] The name of the International Society for the Study of Multiple
    Personality and Dissociation was changed in the early 1990s to the
    International Society for the Study of Dissociation (ISSD).
[3] California Psychological Association Convention 2004: "CHANGE: The
    Power of Psychology," March 25-28, Hilton San Diego Resort, Pre-
    Convention Workshop, March 25, 2004, "Psychotherapy with Ritual
    Abuse Survivors: Obstacles and Solutions," Ellen Lacter, Ph.D.,
    Mary Battles, MFCC. Published in The California Psychologist, 37
    (1) January/February 2004, p. 22. Of note also is the fact that
    the first page of the California Psychological Association's web
    site provides a link to the site of Eleanor S. Field, Ph.D., who
    offers Past Life Regression in a list of "Solutions."
[4] R. Christopher Barden, Ph.D., J.D., quoted in Glenn, D. (2003,
    October 24). Nightmare scenarios. Chronicle of Higher Education,
    50 (9), A14.
[5] Crews, F. (2004, March 11). The trauma trap. New York Review of
    Books, 51 (4). pp. 37-40.
[6] The excerpts from the Klassen judgment were published on December
    31, 2003 in the The Star Phoenix [Saskatoon], p. D4.
[7] McNally, R. (2003). Remembering Trauma. Boston: Harvard University
[8] Brown, D., Scheflin, A.W., & Hammond, D.C. (1998). Memory, Trauma
    Treatment, and the Law. New York: W.W. Norton.
[9] Ibid.

/                                                                    \
| "Most counsellors find cognitive-behavioral techniques             |
| unappealing. Dr. Steven Hyman is a neuropsychiatrist and the       |
| provost of Harvard University; in 2001, he was the head of the     |
| National Institutes of Mental Health. hen I was N.I.M.H.         |
| director, I was upset by how few people wanted to learn cognitive- |
| behavioral therapy,' Hyman told me. ere was a therapy proven to  |
| be effective by clinical trials. But psychologists and             |
| psychiatrists are so interested in people, and they want to cure   |
| you with their understanding and empathy and connection. The       |
| cognitive-behavioral approach is by-the-book, mechanical,          |
| pragmatic. The therapists find it boring. It's not their idea of   |
| therapy, and they don't want to do it.' Debriefing holds more      |
| allure for most counsellors, for it reflects a prevailing cultural |
| bias; namely, that a single outpouring of emotion -- one good cry  |
| -- can heal a scarred psyche.                                      |
|                                    Groopman, J. (2004, January 26) |
|                                                 The grief industry |
|                                              The New Yorker, 30-38 |

       |                    SPECIAL THANKS                    |
       |                                                      |
       |  We extend a very special `Thank you' to all of      |
       |  the people who help prepare the FMSF Newsletter.    |  
       |                                                      |
       |  EDITORIAL SUPPORT: Janet Fetkewicz, Howard          |
       |           Fishman, Peter Freyd                       |
       |  COLUMNISTS: Members of the FMSF Scientific advisory |
       |     Board and Members who wish to remain anonymous   |
       |  LETTERS and INFORMATION: Our Readers                |

                        I N   M E M O R I A M

David A. Halperin, M.D., died on December 3, 2003, at the age of 69 in
New York City. After obtaining his M.D. degree at the University of
Virginia in 1960, Dr. Halperin launched an illustrious 43-year career.
aintaining a private practice in psychiatry and psychoanalysis, Dr.
Halperin was a consulting psychiatrist for the Custody Panel, Supreme
Court of the State of New York. He also was an Associate Clinical
Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Mount Sinai School of
Medicine, New York City, and an Adjunct Associate Professor at the
John Jay College of Criminal Justice of the City University of New

Throughout his career, Dr. Halperin was concerned about the dangers of
destructive cults, and he spoke and wrote about this topic frequently.
He helped found the Cult Hotline and Clinic, which was awarded the
William Lederer Award from the National Jewish Child Guidance

Dr. Halperin always was available to help FMS families in need. Many
people got to know him in 2000 when he organized "False Memory
Syndrome: New Perspectives," the excellent conference on April 7 that
was sponsored by the New York Medical College Department of Psychiatry
and Behavioral Sciences and the Westchester Medical Center Behavioral
Health Center for professionals. A conference for families followed
this event.

Dr. Halperin served since 1993 as a member of the FMSF Scientific and
Professional Advisory Board. During the challenging first years of the
Foundation's activities, he frequently appeared on television talk
shows countering "recovered memory" proponents such as Ellen Bass. It
was a time when the general climate could be quite hostile to the
notion of false memories. FMSF member Shirley Souza commented, "David
Halperin was so special to us because he was willing to come on the
Sallie Jesse show with us. I hope that people who are relatively new
to FMS will benefit from his vast knowledge and writings." Dr.
Halperin will be greatly missed.

/                                                                    \
| Every now and then a book appears that can be instantly recognized |
| as essential for its field--a work that must become standard       |
| reading if that field is to be purged of needless confusion and    |
| fortified against future errors of the same general kind. Such a   |
| book is Remembering Trauma, by the Harvard psychology professor    |
| Richard J.  McNally...                                             |
|                                                                    |
| McNally's title Remembering Trauma neatly encapsulates the         |
| opposing views that, for a whole generation now, have made the     |
| study of trauma into psychology's most fiercely contested ground.  |
| Are scarring experiences well remembered in the usual sense of the |
| term, or can some of them be remembered only much later, after the |
| grip of a self-protective psychological mechanism has been         |
| relaxed? This is the pivotal issue that McNally decisively         |
| resolves. In the process, he also sheds light on a number of       |
| related questions. Does memory of trauma stand apart               |
| neurologically from normal memory? Does a certain kind of          |
| traumatic experience leave recognizable long-term effects that can |
| vouch for its historical reality? What memory problems typify      |
| traumatic stress disorder, and does the disorder itself "occur in  |
| nature" or is it a cultural construct? And is memory retrieval a   |
| well-tested and effective means of helping adults to shed          |
| depression, anxiety, and other psychological afflictions?          |
|                                                                    |
|                                         Crews, F. (2004, March 11) |
|                                                    The Trauma Trap |
|                           New York Review of Books 51 (4). p 37-40 |

                 Study Prompts Broad Interpretations

Anderson, M.C., Ochsner, K.N., Kuhl, B., Cooper, J., Robertson, E.,
Gabrieli, S.W., et al. (2004). Neural systems underlying the
suppression of unwanted memories. Science 303, 232-235

A study by Anderson et al. appearing in the January 9, 2004 issue of
Science generated many news stories claiming that the mental mechanism
for Freudian suppression had been found. Some stories related the
research to the current recovered memory debate.

The researchers asked 24 participants to memorize 36 sets of word
pairs -- for example, "steam-train." Sometimes participants were asked
to suppress the target word (e.g., train), sometimes they had to
remember the target word, and sometimes they didn't have any practice
with the pair at all. The researchers tracked brain activity using
functional magnetic resonance imaging. The results showed that after
many efforts to suppress the target word, participants were slightly
less able to recall it when encouraged to do so.

Anderson et al. said that the research shows the "active process by
which people can prevent awareness of an unwanted past experience and
specifies the neural systems that underlie it." The study is
essentially the same as that reported by Anderson and Green in 2001
[1] with the addition of the brain imaging procedures. FMSF advisors
Henry Roediger, III, and August Piper, Jr. commented in FMSF
Newsletters [2] on the 2001 study, noting that the results were
modest, that neutral words were not traumatic events, and that caution
in interpretation of the results was needed. Those comments also apply
to the new study.

Neuropsychologist Larry Squire has questioned whether Anderson et al.
actually measured the neurological basis for how people can shove
something out of mind as claimed by the researchers. He noted that
"It's possible the subjects are simply directing their attention
elsewhere and using a lot of energy and brain resources to think of
something different. I don't think it is necessarily an indication of
active repression." [3]

The data from Anderson et al. do not appear to relate to the recovered
memory debate. The claims challenged in that controversy are that
there is a special mental mechanism for traumatic memories, that
people commonly repress traumatic memories, that these memories are
stored unchanged in a leaky container somewhere in the brain, and that
the memories can later be accurately recovered. The notion that some
people can push unwanted ideas out of awareness has never been at
issue. [4]

[1] Anderson, M.C. & Green, C. (2001). Suppressing unwanted memories
    by executive control. Nature 410, 366-369.
[2] (See FMSF Newsletter 10 (3) May/June 2001 and FMSF Newsletter 10
    (4) July/August 2001.)
[3] Quoted in O'Connor, A. (2004, January 9). Theory given on burying
    of memories by people. New York Times, p. A-17.
[4] See Chapter 6 in McNally, R. (2003). Remembering Trauma. Harvard
    University Press, and Loftus, E. and Garry, M. (in press), I am
    Freud's brain. Skeptical Inquirer, for critiques of this research.

/                                                                    \
|                           Anderson Study                           |
|                                                                    |
| "Here's a good piece of research from two world-leading            |
| universities showing that people have some conscious control over  |
| what they remember and what they forget. It uses pairs of words.   |
| What that has to do with repressed memories of child sex abuse is  |
| another question....People are all in agreement that some          |
| forgetting is under our control. But it's another big step to say  |
| that the same processes are involved in forgetting more traumatic  |
| memories."                                                         |
|                                               Daniel Wright, Ph.D. |
|        quoted in Ahuja, A. (2004, January 15). Please forget this. |
|                                         The Times [London], p. 14. |

                Second Thoughts About Project Jericho
                             Lona Manning

In the last few weeks, newspaper editorialists and television
commentators in Canada have been writing of an amazing discovery,
namely, that accusations of child abuse are occasionally false. This
newfound objectivity came about because John Popowich and Richard
Klassen, both of Saskatchewan, won lawsuits against officials who
accused them, in two separate investigations, of being ritual child

For Richard Klassen, the fight to clear his name drove him to the
brink of madness. To him, of course, it seemed like the authorities
were the ones who were insane. He was accused of molesting children in
perverse and sickening ways, of conducting satanic rites that included
torture and animal sacrifice. Similar accusations arose across North
America in the 1980s and 90s, but the outcome of the cases depended
more on the credulity of the investigators than the credibility of the
allegations. For example, parents in both Roseburg, Oregon, and Cape
Cod, Massachusetts, believed their children had been forced to
participate in satanic rituals. In Roseburg, three people were sent to
prison but in Cape Cod, the prosecutor's office concluded that the
stories were a "hoax," a fantasy.

We Canadians cannot close the door on this twisted chapter in our
legal history without revisiting Canada's largest ritual abuse
investigation, which started in the town of Prescott, Ontario, in
1989. Here was a small community in which social workers, police, and
prosecutors claimed to find 119 pedophiles engaged in a multifamily,
multigenerational network of child molestation: 275 children and
adults were declared to be victims, 42 children were taken from their
homes, and 28 were eventually made wards of the Crown. Social worker
Pam Gummer, who helped coordinate the investigation, later said that
"[Prescott] is not a unique situation in terms of abuse," as though
almost any town the investigators cared to examine might yield up the
same results.

The Prescott investigation, known as Project Jericho, started with
three children, who journalist Judy Steed called Lucy, Freddy, and
Joey.[1] Lucy was the oldest at 7 and her younger brothers were barely
verbal. There is no question that the children were neglected by their
mother. The house was a pigsty, and the family was being supervised by
Child Protective Services. The authorities were right to intervene
with this family. But in this case, they took a bad situation and
turned it into a nightmare.

One day, a social worker observed Lucy rubbing herself. The child
might have had a urinary infection, which wouldn't be surprising
considering the family's lack of hygiene. But the mother's common-law
husband, Billy Elliott (who was father to none of the children) came
under suspicion. Lucy, Freddy, and Joey were examined by a doctor and
apprehended. No charges were laid at that time.

Instead, according to Steed's account, the three children were placed
in a succession of foster homes and a year went by. In the summer of
1989, their third set of foster parents reported that the children
were telling bizarre stories of sexual abuse, of strange rites in the
basement with groups of adults "dressed in gowns and masks," of being
given "yucky juice" to drink, of killing animals, of digging up
skeletons from the cemetery, of being threatened with guns and knives,
and of being sexually assaulted and videotaped. Steed wrote that the
police found evidence to corroborate the charges. Whatever the
evidence was, it was not videotaped. No videotape evidence was ever
presented. The only physical evidence Steed mentions is that that Lucy
claimed to have been abused in the basement and, lo and behold,
investigators found a crawl space filled with garbage at her
grandparents' house. Another newspaper article states that the
children had been cut with knives, but the final Prescott report
states that the children had been "terrorized" with knives.

Those familiar with well-known ritual abuse hoaxes, like Bakersfield
and McMartin Daycare in California and Fells Acres in Massachusetts,
will recognize that familiar feeling of dismay when reading the press
coverage of the Prescott investigation:

Social workers at first wanted to investigate whether the abuse was
part of a Satanic ritual.... Police often met with child victims
several times, because it took time to win their trust....
Investigators went beyond the traditional boundaries that had been set
when probing such cases.... "What we did differently was ask the
question: `Has anyone else done anything like this to you?'"

Over a period of months, the accusations bloomed to include the murder
of a baby named Joshua. As the investigation progressed, Billy
Elliott's relatives and acquaintances also came under suspicion.
According to Steed, the accused could be described as hillbillies or
"white trash." Many were uneducated, poor, on welfare, and of
below-average intelligence. One man was pulled off the street for
questioning because neighbors pointed him out as a weirdo who was
always hanging around. The man, Cecil Miller, was retarded, illiterate
and slightly crazy. When questioned, he admitted to abusing 17
children, and he named other adult abusers. Another mentally
handicapped man was described as "easily manipulated." He was one of
those who pled guilty.

It's possible that some genuine pedophiles were caught in the Project
Jericho dragnet -- after all, the investigators interviewed half the
adults in town. But it's also probable that accusations and
confessions were obtained through intensive questioning of a group of
vulnerable people. Some persons were identified as both perpetrators
and victims, because the hidden abuse had allegedly gone on for
generations. So how did a perpetrator fare in court if he did not also
claim victimhood? And how could he claim victimhood without accusing
others? One young mother said she accused her own parents because
that's what the police and social workers wanted to hear. They had
apprehended her son, whom she desperately wanted to get back.

The web of accusations and counter-accusations grew to ensnare
hundreds of people. Entire families were decimated. One of the accused
committed suicide. It's as though a slum clearance project was
conducted with social workers instead of bulldozers. Bulldozers would
have been kinder.

Many adults were sentenced to prison whereas the children were
sentenced to counselling. One doesn't know whether to laugh or cry
while reading Judy Steed's account of the therapy sessions:

They would arrive for therapy and just sit in the playroom, surrounded
by toys, not knowing what to do.... "They wanted us to think they were
happy, and that's all they wanted us to think," says [one of the
therapists]... " A typical client, 10 years old, who arrives for her
session, says, `I'm fine,' and makes it very clear she's not
interested in talking about abuse or going to court."

When the child victims got to court, most of the initial ritual
elements were not presented. At trial, when asked to talk about what
happened down in the basement, Lucy and Freddy couldn't or wouldn't
talk about it.

It is a point of pride with Desmond McGarry, the special prosecutor
appointed to try the Prescott accused, that the trials focused on
criminal sexual acts and nothing more: "If you review the transcripts
of the Jericho cases, you will nowhere find the [courts] or the police
asserting a ritual element to these offences...and while there is no
question there were allegations that either did not happen or that
could not be proven, I think it is fair to say that no one was
prosecuted for an offence that did not happen."

On the other hand, if the jury was deprived of hearing and
understanding the context in which the allegations arose, then it
appears that valuable exculpatory evidence was kept from the
courtroom. "Billy touched my private parts" is a straightforward
accusation. "Billy touched my private parts, then buried me in a
dungeon and shot a baby" is something else again. While McGarry blamed
the media for sensationalizing the case by dwelling on the satanic and
ritual aspects, the media were not the ones who dubbed the
investigation "Project Jericho," a reference to the biblical Joshua,
in honor of the infant allegedly murdered.

Billy Elliott served eight-and-a-half years in prison. At one point,
he was charged with murdering baby Joshua, but that charge was dropped
when police couldn't find a body. Another defendant died in prison.
The other Prescott defendants were given shorter sentences.

The Project Jericho investigators claimed to consult with experts, yet
they believed they were forging new ground. A report on the
investigation states "Most of the available literature was based on
the American experience and wasn't very helpful." But at the same time
the Prescott investigators were drawing accusations out of dozens of
children, California's McMartin Daycare case disintegrated as the jury
realized that children could be pressured into telling absurd tales.
Even as the Ontario police were excavating backyards in the search for
baby Joshua, researchers such as Dr. Maggie Bruck of McGill University
were doing ground-breaking research into the suggestibility of young
children. There was ample evidence to conclude that mass molestation
cases must be viewed with suspicion.

The people of Prescott, understandably, would just as soon forget
about Project Jericho. But this is a case which deserves scrutiny.

Lona Manning is a freelance writer and advocate for persons wrongfully
accused of ritual child abuse. She maintains a website, "Imaginary
Crimes," at

[1] Steed's account of the Prescott case appears in her 1994 book, Our
    Little Secret: Confronting Child Sexual Abuse in Canada.

                  Recovering from Recovered Memories
                           Mark Pendergrast

  The November/December issue of the FMSF Newsletter included the
  introduction to an unpublished book proposal by Mark Pendergrast, to
  be called Recovering from Recovered Memories, with a promise to
  bring you more excerpts in installments. Here is the end of the
  introduction and beginning of Chapter 1.

Recovering from Recovered Memories is addressed primarily to those who
were most directly affected, those with the "recovered memories."
They have lost the most and have the most confusion and guilt. The
book is also intended for everyone involved in this phenomenon,
including: oadult children who recovered memories and still believe
them to be memories of actual events.

  * adult children who recovered memories and are now questioning them
    to some degree.
  * adult children who recovered memories and have now fully retracted
    their accusations.
  * spouses of accusing adult children.
  * siblings who supported their accusing sibling's memories.
  * siblings who supported their accused parents.
  * parents who lost their children to recovered memories.
  * extended family members (aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents).
  * friends of the family, including clergymen, teachers, lawyers.
  * mental health professionals who wish to help families seeking to
    reunite and heal.

As you read this book, keep the words of the poet William Blake in

  Mutual Forgiveness of each Vice,
  Such are the Gates of Paradise.

            Chapter 1: How Could This Have Happened to Me?

"We are frightened, we are embarrassed, we are confused, and we are in

So writes Melody Gavigan, a"retractor" who concluded that her incest
memories, recovered during therapy in 1990, were illusory. Her father
never had sex with her. All of her accusations were false.

Yet she still has the images of those "memories" etched on her brain.
She still has the anger and the emotions sometimes, directed at her
father and her mother, who had been accused of knowing about the abuse
and doing nothing. Melody still doesn't really understand what happened
to her. Not only that, Melody has to put up with the resentment and
hatred of others who do not understand what happened to her.

"You're a liar who ruined your family."

"You must have been really sick or psychotic to fall for that."

"How could you have been so stupid?"

"How could you let someone play with your mind like that?"

"Well, your memories might not be real, but your father must have abused
you in some other way."

"You really were a victim of incest. Now you're in denial again."

"If you can't trust your memories, how do you know your memory is
correct now?"

People coming out of their recovered memories face a devastating
reality: They were had. They were wrong in a fundamental, terrible way
about their own pasts, their own memories. How could this have
happened?  Doesn't this mean that they were crazy, or that they were

No. Throughout history, people have been susceptible to group fears, to
social pressure, to fad diagnoses. For two centuries (the 16th and
17th), for instance, all of civilized Europe engaged in a terrible hunt
for witches  --  and many of the accused came to believe that they were,
indeed, witches or that they were possessed by demons. In the late
nineteenth century, only a hundred years ago, a mythical disease called
"neurasthenia" afflicted many people, particularly those in the upper
classes. Neurasthenics supposedly suffered from overly refined,
sensitive nervous systems, and their supply of "nervous force" was
depleted.  The cure for such a delicate, neurasthenic woman was to lie
in bed and be fed and washed by attendants. She must not even speak, use
her hands, or read. And, most important, she was to be isolated from her
family, relying completely on her all-wise physician.

What happened to you was not really so unusual. It is understandable.
You were offered an explanation for problems in your life that otherwise
seemed inexplicable. You probably resisted that explanation, since it
hurt so badly, but it became an obsession to know the truth, to face
your horrible past. And you entered a downward spiral in which incest
memories were the inevitable result.

What most people looking at the recovered memory phenomenon do not
understand is how compelling it is, how much it explains, how it
provides the key to the puzzle of your life.
If you who are reading this sentence recovered memories of abuse, it is
99% certain that you did so after going through a very difficult time in
your life, often a transitional period of uncertainty and stress. Here
is one typical case study [to be printed in the next issue of the

In each chapter, we will introduce another real-life situation, but all
names have been changed. In this particular instance, the stress that
preceded the "memories" involved the difficult transition from
adolescence to adulthood, during the college years. Many other cases
involve troubled relationships, moves to a new home, job difficulties,
sexual dysfunction, substance abuse, eating disorders, depression, panic
attacks, or illness. It does not appear to matter what the precipitating
life stressor was.  If the person then sought therapy from someone who
believed in massive repression, the end result was the same.

It is important to understand that therapy is not necessary for someone
to recover questionable "memories" of abuse. In many cases, just reading
a book, talking to a friend, attending a lecture or church meeting,
joining a support group, or watching a television show were sufficient.

  Mark Pendergrast is the author of Victims of Memory: Incest
  Accusations and Shattered Lives as well as God, Country and Coca
  Cola, Uncommon Grounds, and Mirror, Mirror. Mark welcomes your
  responses to this proposal.  E-mail:

/                                                                    \
| "A mind, they say, is a terrible thing to waste. But in movies, a  |
| memory is an excellent thing to lose."                             |
|                                                                    |
|                                     Morris, W. (2004, February 15) |
|              Movies: Remembering to forget amnesia, blackouts, and |
|                 brainwashing remain popular plot devices in movies |
|                                               Boston Globe, p. N13 |

                          A Retractor Honors
                        Margaret Thaler Singer
                        by Jeanette D. Bartha

Humanity lost a kind soul and a great mind when Dr. Singer died this
past December.

As a retractor who experienced the inhumane aspects of repressed
memory therapy, I am grateful for this unique opportunity to share
with you how her life's work facilitated my understanding of the
mechanisms of recovered memory therapy. This in turn sparked my
healing process.

The voluminous writings of Dr. Singer brought the concepts of
brainwashing, thought reform, and coercion from dusty peer-reviewed
articles into mainstream publications, where I first read her work.
After years of study, I believe these concepts are at the crux of
repressed memory therapy. Without doubt, I know that I did not receive
psychotherapy but rather a potent form of psychological manipulation.

Margaret Thaler Singer was raised and educated in the mountains of
Colorado, likely contributing to her ability to stand soundly in
practicality, while some of her contemporaries shot off into fringe
therapies that both harmed patients and led to the decline in
credibility of psychotherapy as a whole.

The death of Dr. Singer passes the torch to each of us caught in the
web of deceitful psychotherapy. We are challenged to carry on her work
by fearlessly exposing psychological manipulation that destroys
individuals who seek help and often leads to the disintegration of
their loving families.

I will miss knowing she is there to guide me, to counsel me, and to
laugh with me. I agree with Pat Crossman, a long-time friend of Dr.
Singer's, who tenderly told me, "Margaret was a good soldier to the

/                                                                    \
| "It seems every American drama series needs to have at least one   |
| episode each season featuring a character with multiple            |
| personality disorder so they can explore deep and important social |
| and legal questions such as: is a person really guilty of a crime  |
| if one of his or her other personalities did it?"                  |
|                                                                    |
|                                       Pryor, L. (2004, January 12) |
|                                                        TV Previews |
|                                        Sydney Morning Herald, p. 8 |

               Butterfly Effect Takes MPD to New Level
                             Pamela Freyd

In response to reader requests for comments, we went to see the new
multiple personality movie, Butterfly Effect, on its opening weekend.
Even though the film was number one in box office receipts on the
weekend of January 24 and 25, its reviews were predominately negative.
For example: "staggeringly bad." (New York Times); "Hollywood has
surpassed itself in its contempt for the audience's intelligence."
(The Times [London]); "If you approach this movie in the right frame
of mind -- that is, with total contempt -- you can still enjoy it as a
comedy." (Buffalo News).

The story begins when 7-year-old Evan Treborn's mother is asked to go
to his classroom to see a particularly gruesome picture that he had
drawn. Evan does not remember making the picture because he regularly
experiences blackouts that no one can explain. Thirteen years later, a
college-age Evan (played by Ashton Kutcher) starts to recover long-
repressed memories of what had happened during the blackouts. He
recalls an incident of sexual abuse, his father trying to strangle
him, and other unpleasant things. He also discovers a way to go back
in his mind and change what happened. When he talks about time travel
with his mom, she tells him that his institutionalized father started
to engage in time travel when he was Evan's age.

According to Daniel Newman of the Richmond Times, the driving
principle of Butterfly Effect is taken from a classic story by Ray
Bradbury, "The Sound of Thunder," in which a man discovers he can
alter the present by making a tiny change in the past. (You can read
it on The
Butterfly Effect takes child abuse and loss of memory to the ultimate
level. The protagonist changes not only his own personality, but also
the history and personalities of all the other characters. By altering
one moment in his life, he also alters the lives of his friends. And
Evan does this time and time again, trying to make the present

How does Evan manage such time travel? All he has to do is read his
old journals. Then, accompanied by a whooshing sound and getting a
nosebleed, off he goes. The film can be seen as a spoof on MPD: Why
stop at multiple personalities? Let's have multiple histories instead.
Multiple universes! We think it highly unlikely that movie-goers will
leave the theater as believers in MPD.

  Neman, D. (2004, January 23). Complex "Butterfly Effect" is gripping
  but overly long.
                                                Richmond Times, p. D4.

  Kehr, D. (2004, January 23). A man with a past best forgotten goes
  to all lengths to remember.
                                               New York Times, p. E13.

                       L E G A L   C O R N E R
                              FMSF Staff
             $7.5 Million Settlement in Retractor Lawsuit
      Gale v. Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center et al.
           No. 03 L 12779. Circuit Court Cook County, Ill.

In February 2004, Elizabeth Gale received a record settlement of $7.5
million in a psychiatric repressed-memory malpractice case.[1] Ms.
Gale, now 52 years old, entered therapy in 1986 for mild depression
and came to believe that she had Multiple Personality Disorder and was
a part of an intergenerational satanic cult that abused children. She
was treated by Bennett Braun, M.D., Roberta Sachs, M.D., and Corydon
Hammond, Ph.D., who hospitalized her for 2,016 days (5 1/2 years)
between 1988 and 1994 at Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center
and Rush North Shore Medical Center.[2] Ms. Gale came to believe that
she had bred children for "the cult" who were then sacrificed and even
cannibalized. So fearful did she become that she went through a tubal
ligation (approved by Bennett Braun) so that she would no longer harm

Of the $7.5 million award, Hammond will pay $175,000, Sachs will pay
$3.1 million, Braun will pay $500,000, Rush-Presbyterian St. Luke's
will pay $150,000 and Rush North Shore will pay $3.6 million.

In 1986, Ms. Gale, who had no previous psychiatric problems, was
leading a normal but busy life. She worked as a legal secretary while
attending DePaul University to pursue a B.S. in business
administration. When she became mildly depressed, she sought help from
a psychologist who referred her to Dr. Bennett Braun. According to
Zachary Bravos, one of Gale's attorneys, the psychologist had no idea
that Dr. Braun practiced bizarre therapy, and he has expressed great
regret for the referral.

According to the complaint that was filed in 1998, Ms. Gale was
admitted to Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's by Dr. Braun prior to his
seeing her. She was then transferred to Rush North Shore and was a
patient of both Dr. Braun and Dr. Sachs. She was treated for two days
by Dr. Hammond in 1991. Hammond placed Gale in deep hypnotic trances
and advised her that she had been programmed by the satanic cult using
a flashing red light, electrodes attached to her head, noises in her
left ear, pain in her right ear, intravenous chemicals, and physical
restraints. He advised her that she was in danger of death by suicide
as a result of the cult programming. Her programming was supposed to
have been through letters of the Greek alphabet. Hammond claimed he
could identify the codes and only by doing that could such codes be
deactivated and erased.

Ms. Gale's treatment with Braun ended in 1994, and her treatment with
Sachs ended in 1997. She started to reflect on her therapy after
reading about the Burgus case. When asked how she came to believe that
her recovered memories had been wrong, Ms. Gale stated: "Very slowly.
Actually, I've thought about that. I think the process progressed the
more I was away from Braun. I know that moving out on my own was a big
step towards realization of what happened. There really wasn't a
definitive moment when I said this is all wrong." Gale is still
working to put her life back together.

The case settled even before depositions had been taken, according to
attorney Bravos. He said that the evidence spoke for itself, noting
that Gale had videotapes given to her of the hypnosis sessions
conducted by Hammond.

Mary Ellen Busch, who represented Rush, noted that Braun and his
colleagues were not employed by the hospitals. She said that the
hospitals settled because they were concerned that a jury would not
understand the methods used by Braun, Sachs, and Hammond. She said
that these methods were widely accepted at the time.

Richard H. Donohue, attorney for Roberta Sachs, said that the amount
was so high because she is the person who had the insurance coverage.
He said that Sachs did not play a large role in Gale's treatment.
Gale, however, has noted that Sachs ran the program. Sachs is believed
to be in Maryland. Braun, whose license was suspended in Illinois for
several years, is currently practicing in Helena, Montana, having had
his license reinstated. Hammond is on the faculty of the University of
Utah and continues to practice.

Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center was represented by Mary
Ellen Busch and R. Dennis Rasor of Anderson, Bennett & Partners in
Chicago. Roberta Sachs was represented by Richard H. Donohue of
Donohue, Brown, Matthewson & Smyth in Chicago. Bennett Braun was
represented by Martin A. Kanofsky of Merlo, Kanofsky & Brinkmeier Ltd.
in Chicago. Elizabeth Gale was represented by Todd A. Smith and Ken
Merlino of Power, Rogers & Smith P.C. in Chicago and by Zachary M.
Bravos and Roger H. Kelly of Wheaton, Illinois.

                                     Rooney, J.F. (2004, February 11)
      Docs, hospitals to pay $7.5 million in claim of bad mental care
                                  Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. p. 1. 1

[1] Although Patricia Burgus received a $10.6 million settlement in
    1997, the money included payments to her two children. Below is a
    list of some previous settlements and awards over $1 million. (No
    information is available on the amounts of the many confidential 
[2] Included in this time were 143 days spent at Charter Hospital in
    Miami (6-11-90 to 11-01-90).                                    

/                                                                    \
| Asked if he thought [Dr. Bennett] Braun really believed his        |
| diagnoses, [attorney Todd] Smith said, "Patty Burgus had a cap on  |
| her insurance payments of about $3 million. When she got up to the |
| $2.8 million point, it was at that point at which she no longer    |
| was an inpatient. It appeared to us there may have been a          |
| connection with the insurance availability."                       |
|                                                                    |
|                                 Pallasch, A.M. (2004, February 12) |
|                               Not in cult: Woman gets $7.5 million |
|                                            Chicago Sun-Times. p. 8 |

|            Settlements and Awards Exceeding $1 Million             |
|               in Recovered Memory Malpractice Cases                |
|                                                                    |
|                            Jury Awards                             |
|                                                                    |
| HAMANNE v. HUMENANSKY, U.S. Dist. Ct., 2nd Dist., MN, No.          |
| C4-94-203. In 1995, jury awarded over $2.46 million to a woman     |
| after finding psychiatrist negligently failed to meet recognized   |
| standards and directly caused injury. Woman sought treatment for   |
| anxiety after a move, but was diagnosed MPD and told she           |
| experienced childhood sexual and ritual abuse despite contrary     |
| evaluations and lack of memories of abuse. Treatment included      |
| hypnosis, guided imagery, sodium amytal, antidepressants, lengthy  |
| hospitalizations. No informed consent. Also awarded $200,000 to    |
| husband for loss of consortium.                                    |
|                                                                    |
| CARLSON v. HUMENANSKY, Dist. Ct., 2nd Dist., MN, No. CX-93-7260.   |
| In 1996, unanimous jury verdict found that psychiatrist failed to  |
| meet recognized medical standards and directly caused injury.      |
| Awarded $2.5 million. Woman had entered therapy for depression and |
| marital problems but claimed therapy caused her to develop false   |
| memories of childhood sexual and ritual abuse. Treatment included  |
| sodium amytal, guided imagery, hypnosis.                           |
|                                                                    |
| CARL v. KERAGA, U.S. Federal Ct., Southern Dist., Tex., Case No.   |
| H-95-661. In 1997, jury found remaining defendant 24% liable       |
| (individually and through her corporation) for injury to patient.  |
| Awarded $5.8 million. Several jurors said they were concerned      |
| about failure to warn of the risks of treatment. Woman claims she  |
| was misdiagnosed MPD and told she had over 500 personalities to    |
| cope with childhood abuse, ritual murder, cannibalism, and         |
| torture. She was instructed to report herself to the police as a   |
| child molester, even though she had no memory of ever abusing her  |
| own children. Her teenage children were also hypnotized and told   |
| they were victims of a cult. All but 2 of other 25 defendants      |
| settled out of court prior to trial.                               |
|                                                                    |
| SAWYER v. MIDDELFORT, 1999 Wisc. 595 N.W.2d 423. Jury verdict      |
| March 16, 2001. After a three-week trial and 10 hours of           |
| deliberations, a jury awarded Thomas and Delores Sawyer $5.08      |
| million in a third-party lawsuit against their daughter's former   |
| therapists. The Sawyers had been accused of sexual and physical    |
| abuse by their daughter, Nancy, who was deceased. In 1998, the     |
| case had been dismissed on summary judgment but was revived in a   |
| decision by the Wisconsin Court of Appeals in 1998. In 1999, the   |
| Wisconsin Supreme Court held that the third-party claims in this   |
| suit should not have been dismissed. The court emphasized that the |
| parents could sue their daughter's therapist for injuries caused   |
| directly by the false allegations, but not for the "loss of        |
| society and companionship" of their daughter.                      |
|                                                                    |
|                            Settlements                             |
|                                                                    |
| FULTZ v. CARR and WALKER, Circuit Ct., Multnomah Co., OR, No.      |
| 9506-04080. In 1996, two treating therapists settled out of court, |
| one for $1.57 million, the other for a confidential amount.        |
| Patient had sought help for mild depression and weight problems,   |
| but she claims the therapists misdiagnosed childhood sexual and    |
| ritual abuse and MPD. Her preschool children were also treated and |
| persuaded they were abused by a cult. The treating therapist       |
| assisted in obtaining restraining order against patient's parents  |
| and siblings.                                                      |
|                                                                    |
| RUTHERFORD v. STRAND et al, Circuit Ct., Green Co. MO, No.         |
| 1960C2745. In 1996, a church in Missouri agreed to pay $1 million  |
| to a woman and her family who said that under the guidance of a    |
| church counsellor, the woman came to believe that her father had   |
| raped her, impregnated her, and performed a coat-hanger abortion   |
| -- when, in fact, she was still a virgin and her father had had a  |
| vasectomy.                                                         |
|                                                                    |
| COOL v. OLSON, Circuit Ct., Outagamie Co., Wisc. No. 94CV707. In   |
| 1997, after 15 days of courtroom testimony, defendant agreed to    |
| settle for $2.4 million. Testimony described how psychiatrist      |
| induced horrific false memories of childhood sexual and ritual     |
| abuse, including demonic possession and misdiagnosed MPD. Therapy  |
| techniques included hypnosis, age regression, exorcism, and drugs  |
| that caused hallucinations. The patient had originally entered     |
| therapy for bulimia and help after a traumatic event had befallen  |
| family.                                                            |
|                                                                    |
| BURGUS v. BRAUN, Rush-Presbyterian, Circuit Ct., Cook Co., IL, No. |
| 91L08493/93L14050. In 1997, on the day scheduled for trial, a      |
| $10.6 million settlement was finalized. The patient originally     |
| sought treatment for postpartum depression but was diagnosed MPD   |
| as result of supposed childhood sexual and ritual abuse including  |
| cannibalism, torture. She claims psychiatrist utilized suggestive  |
| techniques but failed to obtain informed consent. Her preschool    |
| age children also were hospitalized, diagnosed MPD, and treated    |
| for SRA.                                                           |
                             Klassen Wins
                   Kvello v. Miazga, 2003 SKQB 559,
                            Dec. 30, 2003

In a strongly worded 169-page opinion, Saskatchewan Justice George
Baynton ruled on December 30, 2003, that Richard Klassen and 11 others
had demonstrated that they had been victims of malicious prosecution
by two Crown prosecutors, therapist Carol Bunko-Ruys, and police Supt.
Brian Dueck. Justice Baynton wrote:

"The lives of the plaintiffs have been irrevocably damaged. The
unlawful actions of the defendants caused them to be held up to hatred
and public ridicule by being branded as pedophiles and wrongfully
charged with the most horrible and distasteful crimes in our society
... In my respectful view, the lack of any regret or remorse for what
was done to the plaintiffs is a strong indicator of malice on the part
of each of the defendants."

In 1991, Richard Klassen and others were charged with abusing children
in bizarre ways: forcing them to eat eyeballs, drink blood,
participate in orgies, and watch newborn babies get skinned and
buried. The case was called the "scandal of the century." The real
scandal, Justice Baynton wrote, "is the travesty of justice that was
visited upon 12 of those individuals, the plaintiffs in the civil
action, by branding them as pedophiles, even though each of them was
innocent of the horrendous allegations and criminal offenses charged
against them."

The burden of proof in malicious prosecution cases is high. Two years
ago, the Canadian Supreme Court in the Benoit Proulx case had ruled
that the following must be shown: 1) The proceedings were initiated by
the defendant. 2) The proceedings have terminated in favour of the
plaintiffs. 3) There is an absence of reasonable and probable cause.
4) The existence of malice, or a primary purpose other than that of
carrying the law into effect. "Errors in judgment, ill-advised
exercise of discretion, professional negligence or even recklessness
on the part of the defendants are not sufficient to establish
liability for malicious prosecution." [1]

Justice Baynton found that malice had been shown in a number of
instances. For example: Many adults had been named as abusers by the
children, but only the Klassen and Kvello families were prosecuted.
The defendants knew that two of the complaining children were being
sexually abused by their brother but made no effort to place them in
separate locations. Therapist Bunko-Ruys and Supt. Dueck knew that the
children were lying and that their stories were inconsistent. The
court's ruling states:

"Another strong indicator of malice on the part of Bunko-Ruys is the
manner in which she responded to [K.R.] when [K.R.] confessed to her
that she had lied in court about being abused . . . By withholding and
in effect attempting to stifle such evidence, Bunko-Ruys may . . .
have run the risk of being charged with the criminal offence of
obstructing justice. At the least, her conduct shows bad faith and
malice towards all the individuals who were charged, including the
plaintiffs. All the defendants, except for Dueck, maintained that the
stays were entered by the Crown because the [R.] children were too
traumatized to testify again . . . They did not reveal that the stays
were entered because the evidence of the [R.] children was inherently
unreliable. By adopting such a position, the defendants, except Dueck,
caused the public to presume that the plaintiffs were guilty as
charged. The response of Bunko-Ruys to the recantation that was made
to her, constituted a deliberate decision on her part to stifle the
truth so that this public perception of the guilt of the plaintiffs
would remain unchallenged . . ."

Richard Klassen, who has only a 7th-grade education, began the
malicious prosecution lawsuit in 1994. The lawsuit went nowhere,
however, until the CBC program Fifth Estate aired an episode showing
problems with the investigation in the case. Klassen then fired his
lawyers, bought a $350 civil law book and a bullhorn, painted signs,
and picketed outside the Saskatoon Police headquarters.

Klassen filed his lawsuit in order to clear his name and the names of
others in his family. When Marie Klassen was on her deathbed in 1995,
she had asked her children to "clear our names." Klassen said that he
could not rest until his family was completely exonerated and
expressed frustration and disappointment that the Crown has filed an
appeal of the Baynton decision.

The plaintiffs seek $10 million. A separate hearing to determine the
amount of award is scheduled for September 13, 2004, after the Court
hears a Crown appeal of the Klassen decision.

[1] Law Society of Saskatchewan (2003, December 30). The Saskatchewan
    Court of Queen's Bench released its reasons for judgment on Kvello
    v. Miazga. (

Excerpts from Klassen judgment. (2003, December 31). The StarPhoenix.
[Saskatoon], p. D4.

Hutchinson, B. (2004, January 10). One man's fight against horrible ?
and false ? charges. National Post [Toronto].

          Jesse Friedman Seeks to Have Conviction Overturned

In January 2004, Jesse Friedman filed a motion in Nassau (New York)
County Court to have his conviction of child sexual abuse overturned.
Mr. Friedman and his family were the focus of the 2003 Academy Award
nominated documentary Capturing the Friedmans. [See FMSF Newsletter 12
(4)]. Friedman now contends that he lied when he confessed to sexually
abusing children in computer classes that his father ran in their
home. He was 19 years old in 1988 when he went to prison and was
paroled after serving 13 years. The 1000-page filing is based on
information gained during the making of the documentary. Friedman is
represented by Mark Gimpel and Earl Nemser of Manhattan.

The motion argues that prosecutors failed to provide potentially
exculpatory information during the trial as they should have under New
York law. The prosecutors knew that the vast majority of the students
had no memory of any abuse, and those students who did eventually
testify had been subjected to manipulative and suggestive questioning
by the police. In one case, a detective visited a student 15 times in
order to get incriminating testimony. In addition, hypnosis was used
in memory retrieval attempts. A number of the students later admitted
that they had provided false testimony in order to put an end to the

Jesse Friedman said: "I've been waiting 16 years now to prove my
innocence. Andres [Jarecki, the producer of Capturing the Friedmans]
was able to uncover a tremendous amount of information ... to prove
what I always suspected was the case. I never doubted me." Frances
Galasso, the detective in charge of the Friedman case, defended the
integrity of the investigation and denied that hypnosis was used.

Commenting on the case, the president of the New York State
Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Richard Barbuto, said that
various court cases have established that the defense is entitled to
the inconsistent statements made by witnesses. He noted:

"Especially in sex cases, you always ask for inconsistent statements
in the discovery phase since we have learned that these techniques can
be faulty in and of themselves and, also, when abused, can produce
false results. Guilty pleas are a product of knowing what the evidence
is, and as defense lawyers, when the prosecution doesn't want to tell
us what happened, it makes it difficult to tell our clients whether to
go forward. Discovery is designed so we wouldn't have trial by
ambush." (quoted in Topping & Bonilla, 2004)

Topping, R.., & Bonilla, D.M. (2004, January 11). Detective takes
offense, stands by Friedman probe. Newsday, p. A4.

Sykes, T. (2003, January 7). Reel-to-reel justice. New York Post, p.

                   F R O M   O U R   R E A D E R S

                     Picked Up Where She Left Off

I thought you would like to know that our daughter, who sent her
"letter" to us in July 1991, has over the past 18 months slowly and
carefully resumed contact with us and her siblings. She is also in the
process of mending fences with her former friends.

In June 2002, I received a birthday card and a nice note from her
after years of silence. I responded with a short note of thanks. She
then began corresponding on a regular basis with me and, after a
while, included her dad in her notes. Slowly, she has begun
corresponding via e-mail and mail with the rest of our family. She
called me on my birthday in 2003 (the first voice contact we had) and
then began calling me on a regular basis. These calls evolved to
include her dad. She had married and, when she recently found out she
was pregnant, began planning on a visit from me. I flew out to see her
in September and to meet her husband and our newest grandchild. It was
a relaxed and wonderful visit. I will be returning in February for
another visit. She plans to come "home" with her family this summer to
see her dad and all her siblings and their families.

We have not discussed her past 11 years except to catch up on her
career and marriage, and I have not pushed it, as from all the
literature I have received from you, I know this often happens and we
must let it take its course.

Last week she and her family drove several hours to meet two of her
first cousins and their families and had a joyous reunion.

What is amazing is that she basically has picked up where she left
off, and everything feels normal, even though, of course, this whole
thing is quite strange. After several years of her absence, I had
given up all hope of ever having any kind of normal relationship with
her, and as time went on, it became more and more unlikely. What a
shock! She tells me her goal is to mend all her relationships, and she
is working hard to do that.

Thank you for all of your support during these past years and for
allowing us to get a handle on what has been happening and how to deal
with it. I can't imagine how this would have ever played out for us if
we hadn't been aware of the thousands of families in similar
situations and the advice and information provided by your
organization. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.
                                                   A happy mom and dad

                          Agree to Disagree

Our daughter made contact with her mom several months ago after many
years of no contact, although we did have knowledge of how she was
doing because she had contact with her brother. He always supported us
but made himself available to her when she needed him. Fortunately,
she has turned her life around from her difficult teens and twenties
and is now happily married and expecting a child. She wants her mom to
be involved, and we have heard that this is not unusual. We are both
delighted that she is expecting a child, and we discussed whether her
mom should be involved without me. We decided that in order to know
our grandchild, we needed to agree to this arrangement.

Our daughter would be classified as a returner since she doesn't want
to discuss the estrangement at this time. She and her mom have met,
and they now exchange e-mails several times a week. Her mom has also
met our daughter's husband and is very pleased with him. She said "she
married someone just like her father!" Currently, all of the focus is
on the upcoming birth, and there is no time to discuss or mention the
past. For now that is good enough for us.

Actually, our daughter is a partial returner since she does not want
to deal with me at this time. One parent at a time seems to be all she
can handle. She asked her mom to agree to disagree and not try to
persuade her to include me at this time. We are optimistic but still
wary of what all that means.

As an aside, we were in Barnes & Noble for coffee recently. The coffee
shop is adjacent to the self-help books. There on prominent display
was Courage to Heal. It appears we still have work to do.

                                             A dad with mixed feelings

                          A Hurtful Episode

I am most pleased to report that my daughter has slowly returned to
family relationships -- first with her brothers and finally, for
Christmas, with the whole family. She seems to be stable and in
control of herself, and she is working finally. Neither of us raised
questions about the past. I view it as another episode in life that
hurt greatly but that would hurt even more if you tried to openly
review it and set records straight. All I care is that she be at peace
with herself and make what she can of life in association with her
family. My deepest thanks to FMSF for the information and guidance
given. This was extremely important. Thank goodness for FMSF.

                                                       A satisfied dad
                     The Voice of Reason is Quiet

We accepted our daughter's return with the hope that she would someday
realize her memories were false and that our family life is very good.
When I recently asked her if she still believed those things she once
believed, she replied that she would rather not go down that road
again.  She also said that she cherishes the relationship that she now
has with her Dad and that we would all know the truth someday. That is
exactly what I have believed right along, and we are okay with that.
Some of the other parents I am in contact with are not as fortunate in
having their children return, so we praise God in gratitude. I gained
patience and comfort with this quote: "The voice of reason is quiet,
but it is persistent and will eventually be heard."

We will be forever grateful for the help the FMSF gave us at that
horrendous time in our lives. Thank you again and again.

                                                      A satisfied mom.

                    Look What We've Been Through!

Our daughter has returned to live in our city. She acts quite normal,
yet she has not retracted. Once when hearing of another family having
other kinds of trouble, she looked at me and said, "Look what we've
been through." I almost dropped over.

We just go along as if nothing ever happened because we don't want to
stir up any more trouble, and we love her so.

God bless and keep you all for being there.

                                                      A very happy mom
                        Destructive Influences

After my daughter cut off any relationship with me, I began to dig
into what might have been the cause. After interviewing several of her
friends, I discovered that she was seeing a counsellor who followed the
teachings of Dr. Dan Allender, a Christian counsellor and author. My
daughter's counsellor received his degree in Allender's program at a
seminary. It was after my daughter was advised by her counselor, had
read several of Allender's books, and had attended some Allender
seminars that she decided that I was an evil person.

I am one of the lucky few who has not been accused of any physical or
sexual abuse, but I have been accused of "emotional and relational
abuse." The Allender books I have read suggest that recovered memories
are a wonderful thing.

After contacting the seminary where Allender taught, I found that
there are many, many families that have been torn apart by his
teachings. I am trying to find other families who have had family
relationships destroyed by Allender's teachings.

If there are any FMSF members who would care to contact me about this,
I would like to hear from them. My e-mail is,
and my winter phone is 239-353-1752. After April 22, I will be at

                                                          An angry dad
                            Keep Fighting

It is a wry reality, that after so many years we still have to
continue fighting for mere sanity in psychotherapy. Perhaps it should
not surprise any skeptic who is aware that billions of people believe
all kinds of nonsense for which there is not a scrap of empirical

In spite of the fact that my son has retracted, I will remain involved
with the FMSF because recovered memory quackery dealt him a blow from
which he might never fully recover. This disaster struck him during
the most formative part of his life and made him lose those most
valuable years in his youth where one acquires much needed life
skills. He was only looking for some help to get back on track with
his life when someone recommended to him a therapist, herself a needy
soul recently converted to do trauma search therapy.

Thus he entered into that obsessive netherworld of lost memory
retrieval lunacy and after trauma therapy dwelt for over ten more
years among other sad souls in pseudo-survivor groups. Ironically, his
therapy created the severe trauma of suicidal ideation where no real
trauma had ever been experienced before. It ended what had been a
charmed childhood filled with wonder, learning, and discovery, and
ruined a very promising future. At middle age, he is now struggling to
make up for lost time.

As long as the quacks on the dissociation circuit are still selling
their snake oil about hidden memories of childhood sexual abuse and
for as long I have the strength to do so, I will keep fighting against
their mental health malpractices and for responsible, evidence- and
science-based psychotherapy.

The FMSF and its Scientific Advisory Board and many others have done a
most valuable service toward that same end.

                                                           Adriaan Mak
                                               Contact in S.W. Ontario

*                           N O T I C E S                            *
*                                                                    *
*              Illinois-Wisconsin FMS regional meeting               *
*                                                                    *
*                        Sunday, May 23, 2004                        *
*                               1-5 pm                               *
*                   Falk Pavilion (near Milwaukee)                   *
*                                                                    *
*                         Tentative program:                         *
*                    Speaker, movie, roundtables                     *
*                     Larry's famous sandwiches                      *
*                                                                    *
*                       THE RUTHERFORD FAMILY                        *
*                       SPEAKS TO FMS FAMILIES                       *
*                                                                    *
* The video made by the Rutherford family is the most popular video  *
* of FMSF families. It covers the complete story from accusation, to *
* retraction and reconciliation. Family members describe the things  *
* they did to cope and to help reunite. Of particular interest are   *
* Beth Rutherford's comments about what her family did that helped   *
* her to retract and return.                                         *
*                   To order video send request to                   *
*                    FMSF Video,   Rt. 1 Box 510                     *
*                       Burkeville, TX  75932                        *
*                          $10.00 per tape                           *
*                     Canada add $4.00 per tape                      *
*                Other countries add $10.00 per tape                 *
*                       Make checks payable to                       *
*                           FMS Foundation                           *
*                                                                    *
*                                FREE                                *
*             "Recovered Memories: Are They Reliable?"               *
*     Call or write the FMS Foundation for pamphlets. Be sure to     *
*     include your address and the number of pamphlets you need.     *
*                                                                    *
*                         PSYCHOLOGY ASTRAY:                         *
*  Fallacies in Studies of "Repressed Memory" and Childhood Trauma   *
*                   by Harrison G. Pope, Jr., M.D.                   *
*                            Upton Books                             *
*                                                                    *
* This is an indispensable guide for any person who wants or needs   *
* to understand the research claims about recovered memories. A      *
* review by Stuart Sutherland in the prestigious Nature magazine     *
* (July 17, 1997) says that the book is a "model of clear thinking   *
* and clear exposition." The book is an outgrowth of the "Focus on   *
* Science" columns that have appeared in this newsletter.            *
*                      To Order:  800-232-7477                       *
*                                                                    *
*                      WEB  SITES  OF  INTEREST                      *
*                                                                    *
*                         *
*            The Lampinen Lab False Memory Reading Group             *
*                       University of Arkansas                       *
*                                                                    *
*                              *
*                  The Exploratorium Memory Exhibit                  *
*                                                                    *
*                                      *
*                   Hartford Courant memory series                   *
*                                                                    *
*                                       *
*                     The Memory Debate Archives                     *
*                                                                    *
*                                         *
*                      French language website                       *
*                                                                    *
*                                    *
*               Contains phone numbers of professional               *
*                 regulatory boards in all 50 states                 *
*                                                                    *
*                                       *
*                   Illinois-Wisconsin FMS Society                   *
*                                                                    *
*                                   *
*                             Ohio Group                             *
*                                                                    *
*                                           *
*                Australian False Memory Association.                *
*                                                                    *
*                                           *
*                    British False Memory Society                    *
*                                                                    *
*                               *
*            This site is run by Laura Pasley (retractor)            *
*                                                                    *
*                          *
*             This site is run by Deb David (retractor)              *
*                                                                    *
*                         *
*                            Upton Books                             *
*                                                                    *
*                   *
*                       Locate books about FMS                       *
*                     Recovered Memory Bookstore                     *
*                                                                    *
*                        *
*               Information about Satanic Ritual Abuse               *
*                                                                    *
*                                      *
*                   Parents Against Cruel Therapy                    *
*                                                                    *
*                               *
*                       New Zealand FMS Group                        *
*                                                                    *
*                                       *
*                       Netherlands FMS Group                        *
*                                                                    *
*                                   *
*           National Child Abuse Defense & Resource Center       *
*                                                                    *
*                                  *
*                  Excerpts from Victims of Memory.                  *
*                                                                    *
*                   *
*                         Ross Institute                             *
*                                                                    *
*         *
*             Perspectives for Psychiatry by Paul McHugh             *
*                                                                    *
*                                *
*                 FMS in Scandinavia - Janet Hagbom                  *
*                                                                    *
*                                              *
*                National Center for Reason & Justice            *
*                                                                    *
*                     LEGAL WEBSITES OF INTEREST                     *
*                                        *
*                                           *
*                                       *
*                                           *
*                                      *
*                                                                    *
*                      New Web Site of Interest                      *
*                                                                    *
* Is Theophostic Ministry biblical? Is it safe? What are theologians *
* and Christian apologists saying about this controversial Christian *
* therapy?  Visit this site to read a free e-book (in PDF and HTML): *
* "Lying Spirits: A Christian Journalist's Report on Theophostic     *
* Ministry." This in-depth, investigative report is written by Jan   *
* Fletcher, a Christian journalist from Campbellsville, KY., home of *
* Theophostic Ministry.                                              *
*                                                                    *
*          *
*                                                                    *
*                       REMEMBERING TRAUMA                           *
*                       by Richard McNally                           *
*                    Harvard University Press                        *
* The most comprehensive review of research about trauma and memory  *
*                                                                    *
*                       Highly recommended                           *
*                                                                    *
*                             SNOWBIRDS                              *
*            Please send the FMSF your change of address.            *
*                                                                    *
*                                                                    *
*         S. O. Lilienfeld, S.J. Lynn and  J.M. Lohr (eds.)          *
*                  New York: Guilford Press (2003)                   *
*                                                                    *
*                         Highly recommended                         *
*                                                                    *
*                        by Mark Pendergrast.                        *
*                        Upper Access Books.                         *
*                                                                    *
* "An impressive display of scholarship...a comprehensive treatment  *
* of the recovered-memories controversy.... Pendergrast offers a     *
* broader portrayal of the social and cultural contexts of the       *
* recovered-memories phenomenon [than other books on the subject].   *
* His treatment is also distinguished by some welcome historical     *
* perspective....Pendergrast demonstrates a laudable ability to lay  *
* out all sides of the argument....[He] renders a sympathetic        *
* portrayal of recovery therapists as well-intentioned but           *
* misinformed players in a drama that has veered out of control."    *
*                                                 Daniel L. Schacter *
*                                                Scientific American *
*                     To order:  800-310-8320 or                     *
*                       *
                F M S    B U L L E T I N    B O A R D

Contacts & Meetings:

  See Georgia
  Kathleen 907-333-5248
        Pat 480-396-9420
  Little Rock
        Al & Lela 870-363-4368
        Joanne & Gerald 916-933-3655
        Jocelyn 530-873-0919
  San Francisco & North Bay 
        Charles 415-984-6626 (am); 415-435-9618 (pm)
  San Francisco & South Bay
        Eric 408-738-0469
  East Bay Area
        Judy 925-952-4853
  Central Coast
        Carole 805-967-8058
  Palm Desert
        Eileen and Jerry 909-659-9636
  Central Orange County - 1st Fri. (MO) @ 7pm
        Chris & Alan 949-733-2925
  Covina Area 
        Floyd & Libby 626-330-2321
  San Diego Area 
        Dee 760-439-4630
  Colorado Springs
        Doris 719-488-9738
  S. New England
        Earl 203-329-8365 or
        Paul 203-458-9173
        Madeline 954-966-4FMS
  Central Florida - Please call for mtg. time
        John & Nancy 352-750-5446
        Francis & Sally 941-342-8310
  Tampa Bay Area
        Bob & Janet 727-856-7091
        Wallie & Jill 770-971-8917
  Chicago & Suburbs - 1st Sun. (MO)
        Eileen 847-985-7693 or
        Liz & Roger 847-827-1056
        Bryant & Lynn 309-674-2767
  Indiana Assn. for Responsible Mental Health Practices
        Pat 260-489-9987
        Helen 574-753-2779
  Wichita - Meeting as called
        Pat 785-738-4840
  Louisville- Last Sun. (MO) @ 2pm
        Bob 502-367-1838
        Carolyn 207-364-8891
        Wally & Boby 207-878-9812
   Andover - 2nd Sun. (MO) @ 1pm
        Frank 978-263-9795
  Grand Rapids Area-Jenison - 1st Mon. (MO)
        Bill & Marge 616-383-0382
  Greater Detroit Area
        Nancy 248-642-8077
  Ann Arbor
        Martha 734-439-4055
        Terry & Collette 507-642-3630
        Dan & Joan 651-631-2247
  Kansas City  -  Meeting as called
        Pat 785-738-4840
  St. Louis Area  -  call for meeting time
        Karen 314-432-8789
  Springfield - Quarterly (Apr., Jul., Oct., Jan. - 
            last Sat. of month) @12:30pm
        Tom 417-753-4878
        Roxie 417-781-2058
  Lee & Avone 406-443-3189
  Mark 802-872-0847
        Sally 609-927-5343
        Nancy 973-729-1433 
  Albuquerque  -2nd Sat. (bi-MO) @1 pm
  Southwest Room - Presbyterian Hospital
        Maggie 505-662-7521 (after 6:30 pm)
        Sy 505-758-0726
        Michael 212-481-6655
  Westchester, Rockland, etc.
        Barbara 914-761-3627
  Upstate/Albany Area
        Elaine 518-399-5749
  Susan 704-538-7202
        Bob & Carole 440-356-4544
  Oklahoma City
        Dee 405-942-0531
        Jim 918-582-7363
  Portland area
        Kathy 503-655-1587
        Paul & Betty 717-691-7660
        Rick & Renee 412-563-5509
        John 717-278-2040
  Wayne (includes S. NJ) - 2nd Sat. (MO)
        Jim & Jo 610-783-0396
  Nashville - Wed. (MO) @1pm
        Kate 615-665-1160
        Jo or Beverly 713-464-8970
   El Paso
        Mary Lou 915-591-0271
        Keith 801-467-0669
        Mark 802-872-0847
        Sue 703-273-2343
        Kathy 503-557-7118
        Katie & Leo 414-476-0285 or
        Susanne & John 608-427-3686
        Alan & Lorinda 307-322-4170

  Vancouver & Mainland 
        Lloyd 250-741-8941
  Victoria & Vancouver Island
        John 250-721-3219
        Roma 204-275-5723
        Adriaan 519-471-6338
        Eileen 613-836-3294
        Ethel 705-924-2546
        Ken & Marina 905-637-6030
        Paula 705-543-0318
  St. Andre Est.
        Mavis 450-537-8187
  FMS ASSOCIATION fax 972-2-625-9282 
  Task Force FMS of Werkgroep Fictieve 
        Jan 31-184-413-085
        Colleen 09-416-7443
        Ake Moller FAX 48-431-217-90
  The British False Memory Society
        Madeline 44-1225 868-682

	   Deadline for the May/June Newsletter is April 15
                  Meeting notices MUST be in writing
    and should be sent no later than TWO MONTHS PRIOR TO MEETING.

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|                                         |
| if  you wish to receive electronic versions of this newsletter and |
| notices of radio and television  broadcasts  about  FMS.  All  the |
| message need say is "add to the FMS-News". It would be useful, but |
| not necessary,  if you add your full name (all addresses and names |
| will remain strictly confidential).                                |
  The False Memory Syndrome Foundation is a qualified 501(c)3 corpora-
tion  with  its  principal offices in Philadelphia and governed by its
Board of Directors.  While it encourages participation by its  members
in  its  activities,  it must be understood that the Foundation has no
affiliates and that no other organization or person is  authorized  to
speak for the Foundation without the prior written approval of the Ex-
ecutive Director. All membership dues and contributions to the Founda-
tion must be forwarded to the Foundation for its disposition.

Pamela Freyd, Ph.D.,  Executive Director

FMSF Scientific and Professional Advisory Board,        March 1, 2004

AARON T. BECK, M.D., D.M.S., U of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA;
TERENCE W. CAMPBELL, Ph.D., Clinical and Forensic Psychology, 
    Sterling Heights, MI;
ROSALIND CARTWRIGHT, Ph.D., Rush Presbyterian St. Luke's Medical
    Center, Chicago, IL;
JEAN CHAPMAN, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI;
LOREN CHAPMAN, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI;
FREDERICK C. CREWS, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, CA;
ROBYN M. DAWES, Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA;
DAVID F. DINGES, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA;
HENRY C. ELLIS, Ph.D., University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM;
FRED H. FRANKEL, MBChB, DPM, Harvard University Medical School;
GEORGE K. GANAWAY, M.D., Emory University of Medicine, Atlanta, GA;
MARTIN GARDNER, Author, Hendersonville, NC;
ROCHEL GELMAN, Ph.D., Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ;
HENRY GLEITMAN, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA;
LILA GLEITMAN, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA;
RICHARD GREEN, M.D., J.D., Charing Cross Hospital, London;
DAVID A. HALPERIN, M.D., (deceased)Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New
    York, NY;
ERNEST HILGARD, Ph.D., (deceased) Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA;
JOHN HOCHMAN, M.D., UCLA Medical School, Los Angeles, CA;
DAVID S. HOLMES, Ph.D., University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS;
PHILIP S. HOLZMAN, Ph.D., Harvard University, Cambridge, MA;
ROBERT A. KARLIN, Ph.D. , Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ;
HAROLD LIEF, M.D., University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA;
ELIZABETH LOFTUS, Ph.D., University of California, Irvine, CA;
SUSAN L. McELROY, M.D., University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH;
PAUL McHUGH, M.D., Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD;
HAROLD MERSKEY, D.M., University of Western Ontario, London, Canada;
ULRIC NEISSER, Ph.D., Cornell University, Ithaca, NY;
RICHARD OFSHE, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, CA;
EMILY CAROTA ORNE, B.A., University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA;
MARTIN ORNE, M.D., Ph.D., (deceased) U of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
LOREN PANKRATZ, Ph.D., Oregon Health Sciences Univ., Portland, OR;
CAMPBELL PERRY, Ph.D., (deceased) Concordia University, Montreal, Canada;
MICHAEL A. PERSINGER, Ph.D., Laurentian University, Ontario, Canada;
AUGUST T. PIPER, Jr., M.D., Seattle, WA;
HARRISON POPE, Jr., M.D., Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA;
JAMES RANDI, Author and Magician, Plantation, FL;
HENRY L. ROEDIGER, III, Ph.D. ,Washington University, St. Louis, MO;
CAROLYN SAARI, Ph.D., Loyola University, Chicago, IL;
THEODORE SARBIN, Ph.D., University of California, Santa Cruz, CA;
THOMAS A. SEBEOK, Ph.D., (deceased) U of Indiana, Bloomington, IN;
MICHAEL A. SIMPSON, M.R.C.S., L.R.C.P., M.R.C, D.O.M., Center for
    Psychosocial & Traumatic Stress, Pretoria, South Africa;
MARGARET SINGER, Ph.D., {deceased) University of California, Berkeley,
RALPH SLOVENKO, J.D., Ph.D., Wayne State University Law School,
    Detroit, MI;
DONALD SPENCE, Ph.D., Robert Wood Johnson Medical Ctr, Piscataway, NJ;
JEFFREY VICTOR, Ph.D., Jamestown Community College, Jamestown, NY;
HOLLIDA WAKEFIELD, M.A., Institute of Psychological Therapies, 
    Northfield, MN;
CHARLES A. WEAVER, III, Ph.D. Baylor University, Waco, TX

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